Friday, June 5, 2015

Yes, I eat my Homework

My homework from class - Chinese Burritos in the making.

I am learning a lot from attending the La Cocina Alegre cooking and nutritional education class sponsored through a grant from WalMart and brought to us by the Brownsville Wellness Coalition (the wonderful folks who head up the Brownsville Farmers Market and Community Gardens along with gardening classes). I have three more classes to go and see why these are so popular. 

Classes are given in both English and Spanish. You not only get to take part in a cooking demonstration and get the ingredients and recipe to take and duplicate at home but you learn about the amount of sugar and salt content in food, how to read ingredient labels and not be misled by the wording on packaging to tell you what's in it, tips on using fruits to add sweetness in place of sugar, swap tips with other attendees and the list goes on and on. We also get a cookbook at the final class that includes the recipes we are using.

Since I posted photos of this week's class on FB, I had several requests for the recipe - so here it is. Realize you can substitute other veggies, add shrimp, chicken beef or tofu if you want. We had mushrooms in the class demo and powdered ginger where I had fresh at home. Spice it up with hot peppers. Serve it with a side salad of sliced fresh tomatoes, chopped basil with olive oil and balsamic vinegar and goat cheese, depending on what you have in your garden or in the frig. It's very simple and doesn't take much time to prepare. I didn't make the peanut sauce but will get that recipe when we finish and we get the cookbook. 

I was thinking I need a medium size sauce pan but remember I have a wok pan that would work very well with this recipe. Need to get it out, dust it off and put it to use. I wonder if they will teach me the art of cleaning as I cook. I like the cooking and eating but not so excited about the cleaning up after. My mom and brother know how to do that, something I haven't quite mastered or tried to master actually.

Chinese Burritos

(from the Brownsville Wellness Coalition cooking class)

4 servings  / cost per serving $0.62


1/2 medium onion, thinly sliced
1/4 head cabbage, sliced
2 carrots, grated
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 teaspoon fresh ginger, grated
1/2 medium bell pepper, thinly sliced
3 leaves Swiss chard, chopped (we substituted fresh spinach)
3 tablespoons canola oil (I used less, and used grapeseed oil)
4 large whole wheat flour tortillas or 8 small whole wheat tortillas


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Heat oil in a medium skillet over medium heat for 1-2 minutes.
Saute the onion for 5 minutes.
Add the cabbage, carrots, garlic, ginger, and bell pepper and cook for 5-10 minutes. Stir constantly to keep from burning.

Add the Swiss chard or spinach and cook for 1-2 more minutes.
Remove pan from heat.
Please 1/4 of the mixture on each tortilla.
Roll up the tortillas.
Place the tortillas on a baking sheet, seam side down.
Bake for 20 minutes.
Serve with peanut sauce.

Cabbage, bell pepper, spinach, onion, garlic and mushrooms.

Kudos to everyone who makes this program happen.To learn more about upcoming classes contact or 956-755-0614.